This is a queer, feminist, anti-racist, body positive,
pro-Palestine, anti-oppression, disability justice,
and things that make me happy blog.
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This is important to see and understand for everyone. Please, if you see someone in a public restroom that you think might not belong there because they don’t look like you, don’t scream or yell at them, have some compassion and go about your business.
^^ 90% of trans* kids don’t feel safe at school, and one part of the problem is that they have no safe access to bathrooms. kids have been expelled for using the “wrong” bathroom, others are bullied or beat up, trans adults are chased out by security, harassed, and humiliated. something as simple as going to the bathroom becomes a daunting, scary, and even dangerous endeavor and its got to stop. we all deserve privacy, dignity, and safety in the restroom.
Navajo Nation battles uranium corporations, nuclear industry
May 10, 2013
Since European settlers first arrived on this continent, they set out to accumulate as much wealth and land as humanly possible. Their reign of terror on the indigenous populations —destructive of land, culture and entire communities—was the basis for immense fortunes that spurred the global economy and advancing capitalism.
This struggle, now over 500 years in the making, is ongoing on many fronts, including the Navajo Nation’s current battle over U.S. companies’ uranium extraction.
In early 2013, uranium companies approached the Navajo Nation in hopes they will allow them to renew mining operations on their land. These companies claim that they have developed newer and safer methods for extracting uranium, after decades of environmental destruction and abuse led the Navajo Nation to officially ban their mining.
This decades-long battle for environmental justice is part and parcel of the struggles for workers’ rights and Native self-determination, and against the forces of militarism and capitalism.
Exploitation of Navajo lands
The Navajo Nation sits on 27,425 square miles in the four corners area of the southwestern United States. The area holds a vast amount of uranium ore and thus has become a center in the struggle over nuclear energy and weaponry.
Since the end of World War II, and the onset of the so-called Cold War, the U.S. government began mining uranium domestically in order to not rely on foreign supplies. Uranium is one of the most common naturally occurring radioactive metals on the planet, and was understood as essential for the development of nuclear weapons and technology.
Due to the unique geology and consistent climate of the Southwest, mining companies saw the Navajo reservation as the most profitable site to open mining operations in the 1940s. In 1948, the United States Atomic Energy Commission declared it would be the sole purchaser of all uranium mined in the country, initiating a mining boom of private companies and contractors who knew they had a guaranteed buyer.
Of the thousands of uranium mines, 92% were located in the Colorado Plateau on which the Navajo Nation is located. Between 1944 and 1986 approximately 4 million tons of uranium ore was mined from Navajo Tribal land.
In the early days of mining, Navajo people flocked to the low-wage work given the scarcity of jobs around the reservation. The Navajo workers dealt with racist bosses and coworkers while going into the most dangerous and undesirable jobs at lesser pay. Nonetheless, after Navajo Code Talkers’ had famously contributed to U.S. forces in World War II, many Navajo workers believed they had a patriotic duty and responsibility to the United States.
Mineworkers were also lied to about the dangers of Radon poisoning.
Philadelphia: High school students walk out of class and march to City Hall to protest severe budget cuts and planned school closings, May 9, 2013.
The budget cuts are absolutely horrific. Here are some of the proposed changes:
- Schools with more than 1,000 students would no longer be required to have librarians or librarian assistants.
- Schools would no longer be required to have counselors, and counselors’ caseloads would no longer be capped.
- Teachers could be assigned to unlimited classes outside their subject area, and high school teachers could be assigned an extra class without pay. There would be no limit on amount of consecutive time taught in a school day.
- There would be no limit on class size
- The district would no longer be required to provide copy machines, or “a sufficient number of instructional materials and textbooks.”
- Counselors would no longer be guaranteed to have rooms with privacy and confidentiality, a telephone, a locked filing cabinet and a door.
There’s more here.
Diane Sawyer: So, have you thought, how many women is enough? How many women [on the Supreme Court] would be enough?
Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Nine, nine. [Applause.]
Sawyer: Oh! Oh. [Laughs.]
Ginsburg: Well, there’ve been nine men there for a long long time, right? So why not nine women?
RUTH FOR ALL THINGS